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Govt announces Defence leadership changes

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island flags will now fly permanently alongside the Australian National Flag, Australian Defence Force Ensign, Australian White Ensign and the Royal Australian Air Force Ensign as requested by Chief of the Defence Force Air Chief Marshal Mark Binskin, following 2015 NAIDOC Week celebrations, in Blamey Square at Russell Offices, Canberra. *** Local Caption *** Two new flag poles have been installed to allow the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flags to fly permanently in Blamey Square at Russell Offices in Canberra. The Chief of the Defence Force, Air Chief Marshal Mark Binskin; Vice Chief of the Defence Force, Vice Admiral Ray Griggs; Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Tim Barrett and Brigadier Jane Spalding attended as members of Australia's Federation Guard raised the flags for the first time.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has announced that current Chief of Army, LTGEN Angus Campbell will be appointed to the position of Chief of Defence Force (CDF) and promoted to the rank of General, replacing ACM Mark Binskin who will retire in early July.

Mr Turnbull also announced that the current Chief of Joint Operations (CJOPS), VADM David Johnston will become Vice Chief of Defence Force (VCDF) to replace VADM Ray Griggs who will retire, and AVM Melvin ‘Mel’ Hupfeld, current Head Force Design in the Vice Chief of Defence Force Group (VCDF Group) will be promoted to the rank of Air Marshal and will replace VADM Johnston as Chief of Joint Operations.

Replacing LTGEN Campbell as Chief of Army will be current Deputy Chief of Army, MAJGEN Rick Burr, while the retiring Chief of Navy VADM Tim Barrett will be succeeded by current Deputy Chief of Navy, RADM Mike Noonan.

Official Portrait of Chief of Army, Lieutenant General Angus Campbell, AO, DSC.

LTGEN Angus Campbell (Defence)

LTGEN Campbell is a graduate of the Royal Military College – Duntroon. He has served as a platoon commander in the 3rd Battalion (Parachute) 3RAR, as a troop and squadron commander Special Air Service Regiment (SASR), and as Commanding Officer of the 2nd Battalion, 2RAR.

LTGEN Campbell left Army in 2005 to take up a position as First Assistant Secretary in the Office of National Security, Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, before being promoted to Deputy Secretary and appointed to the position of Deputy National Security Adviser.

He returned to Army in 2010 to lead the Military Strategic Commitments staff in Defence headquarters, before assuming command of Australian forces deployed in the Middle East in 2011.

He subsequently served as Deputy Chief of Army from February 2012 to September 2013, was then commanded the Joint Agency Task Force responsible for the implementation of Operation Sovereign Borders, and was appointed Chief of the Australian Army in May 2015.


Official portrait of Chief of Joint Operations(CJOPS) Vice Admiral David Johnston

VADM David Johnston (Defence)

VADM Johnston graduated from the Royal Australian Naval College in 1982 and later specialised as a Principal Warfare Officer. He has served as Commanding Officer of HMAS Adelaide and HMAS Newcastle, as Director Joint Plans in Strategic Operations Division, and as Commodore Flotillas in Fleet Headquarters.

In 2008 he assumed the role of J3 (Director General Operations) at Headquarters Joint Operations Command. And in October 2010 as Deputy Commander Joint Task Force 633 in the Middle East, for which he was awarded a Commendation for Distinguished Service.

In 2011 VADM Johnston assumed the role of Deputy Chief Joint Operations Command and then as Commander Border Protection Command. In April 2014 he assumed the appointment of Chief of Joint Operations.


Outgoing Air Commander Australia, Air Vice-Marshal Mel Hupfeld, DSC addresses attendees during the Change of Command ceremony at RAAF Base Glenbrook. *** Local Caption *** Headquarters Air Command farewelled Air Vice-Marshal Mel Hupfeld, DSC and welcomed Air Vice-Marshal Gavin Turnbull to the position of Air Commander Australia at a change of command ceremony held at RAAF Base Glenbrook on Friday 12 September 2014. Air Vice-Marshal Hupfeld, DSC was appointed Air Commander Australia on 3 February 2012 and now assumes the position of Head of Capability Systems in the Capability Development Group in Canberra. Recently appointed Air Vice-Marshal Gavin Turnbull brings to his new appointment as Air Commander Australia, a wealth of experience gained during his Air Force career which commenced when he completed his basic training in 1984. After spending the next four years flying UH-1H helicopter at No.9 Squadron at RAAF Base Amberley, in 1991 Air Vice-Marshal Turnbull transferred to fast jets and trained on Macchi, and then F/A-18 Hornet aircraft at RAAF Base Williamtown. Air Vice-Marshal Turnbull has held a number of senior officer positions, the most recent as Director General Air Command Operations (Headquarters Air Command) and Director General Air (Headquarters Joint Operations Command). The Change of Command ceremony featured a four-ship flypast of RAAF Base Glenbrook, by four F/A-18 fighter jet aircraft from Number 77 Squadron, RAAF Base Williamtown, near Newcastle flying in box-formation.

AVM Mel Hupfeld (Defence)

AVM Hupfeld joined the RAAF as an Academy Cadet in January 1980, winning the Flying Prize for his year and graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in 1983.

He flew Macchi, Mirage and F/A-18 fighters, and became a Fighter Combat Instructor in 1989. He has served as B Flight Commander in 3SQN, Executive Officer as 2OCU, and Deputy Director Aerospace Development.

He assumed command of 75SQN in 2001, and led the unit during the Operation Falconer deployment to the Middle East forwhich he was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross and the squadron received a Meritorious Unit Citation.

He later served as Director Aerospace Combat Development, Officer Commanding 81WG, and Director of the Combined Air Operations Centre (CAOC) in the Middle East, Commander Air Combat Group, and Air Commander Australia, before being appointed as Head Capability Systems Division in the former Capability Development Group.



MAJGEN Rick Burr (Defence)

MAJGEN Rick Burr graduated from Royal Military College—Duntroon in 1985. He has served as Deputy Commanding General, US Army Pacific, as commander of the 1st Division/Deployable Joint Force Headquarters, and as commander of the Special Air Service Regiment (SASR).

He has also served as commander of International Security Assistance Force Special Operations Forces (ISAF SOF) in Afghanistan, and Australian Special Forces Task Groups in Afghanistan and Iraq.


Deputy Chief of Navy Rear Admiral Michael Noonan, AM, RAN addresses members of Capability Acquisition and Sustainment Group and Lürssen Werft GmbH & Co. after the signing of the off-shore patrol vessel contract at Russell Offices, Canberra. *** Local Caption *** On 31 January 2018 at Russell Offices, Canberra, the Commonwealth of Australia and Luerssen Australia signed a multibillion dollar contract to supply 12 off-shore patrol vessels (OPV). These OPVs, set to replace the Royal Australian Navy’s aging fleet of Armidale Class patrol boats, will be home ported at HMAS Stirling in Western Australia and will operate out of Darwin and Cairns naval bases and cover most of the northern approaches to Australia as part of ongoing border protection operations.

RADM Mike Noonan. (Defence)

RADM Mike Noonan graduated from the Royal Australian Naval College in 1986 with a Diploma of Applied Science.

He qualified as a Principal Warfare Officer and Air Direction specialist, and has served as Chief of Staff in the AustraIian National Command Headquarters where he was awarded a Commendation for Distinguished Service, as commanding officer of HMAS Parramatta, as Director of Sailor’s Career Management, and as the Chief of Staff in Headquarters Joint Task Force 633 in the Middle East for which he was awarded a second Commendation for Distinguished Service.

He has also served as Commodore Training, Director General Operations in Headquarters Joint Operations Command, and as Director Military Strategic Commitments, and as Commander Border Protection Command

RADM Noonan was appointed as the Deputy Chief of Navy (DCN) in January 2016.